Don Rush

Assoc. Program Director- Sr. Producer News and Public Affairs

Don Rush is the News Director at Public Radio Delmarva (WSCL/WSDL) in Salisbury, Maryland on the campus of Salisbury University. He has spent the last 35 years in broadcast journalism specializing in national politics. Before coming to Salisbury he spent 12 years in Washington DC with the Pacifica Network News bureau. During the 1980’s he was News Director at KFPK in his home town of Los Angeles. He also worked for the Los Angeles based wire and audio news service CNS/RNW. Locally, he has become an award winning journalist covering everything from development and environmental issues to local politics.

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BALTIMORE (AP) - An American Civil Liberties Union attorney says she is relieved Maryland state prison officials have decided to withdraw a proposal to create the nation's first total ban on letters sent to prisoners in an effort to curb inmate access to a highly addictive drug. But she says the ACLU remains concerned that such a policy was introduced in the first place.

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An alleged embezzlement scheme involving millions from the Malaysian government dragged eight limited liability companies based in Delaware into the scandal.

The U.S. Justice Department announced that a number of Malaysian officials took money from their country’s economic development account and passed it through a number of front companies.

The Wilmington News Journal reports that prosecutors specifically cited TWOWS LLC based in Delaware.

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe said was a sharp drop in homelessness in the Old Dominion in the last year.

McAuliffe said at a Capitol news conference Wednesday that overall homeless in Virginia had dropped 10.5 percent, from 7,001 to 6,268.

That's compared to virtually no decrease between 2014 and 2015.

The figures are based on a count done in a single night in January each year.

McAuliffe attributed the drop to work done by the state and nonprofit agencies to combat homelessness.

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - A county prosecutor is suing Gov. Terry McAuliffe to force him to release the names of the felons whose civil rights have been restored.

Loudoun County Commonwealth's Attorney Jim Plowman filed the lawsuit Wednesday in the Loudoun County Circuit Court.

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NORFOLK, Va. (AP) - Officials in the city of Norfolk are considering a new policy that would release footage from police body cameras.

The Virginian-Pilot reports that the city's prosecutor supports the idea. But questions remain about when police would publicly release such videos and how they could impact investigations and prosecutions.

The police-involved shooting in June of a mentally ill man sparked the discussion. Police say the man lunged at officers with a knife. But the city has refused to release the footage.    

Don Rush

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - A textile manufacturer in Henry County plans to expand its operations and create 22 new jobs.

Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe announced Wednesday that Solid Stone Fabrics is investing $1.5 million to expand operations in Henry County, which is in southwest Virginia.

McAuliffe said the state approved a $50,000 grant for the company, which is also eligible for other state incentives.

Virginia beat out California, Florida and New Jersey for the project, McAuliffe's office said.

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CRISFIELD, Md. (AP) - A well-known Maryland seafood festival with a strong political flavor is scheduled for Crisfield.

The 40th Annual J. Millard Tawes Crab and Clam Bake will take place Wednesday afternoon.

Gov. Larry Hogan is scheduled to attend. The Republican is opting for local politics over the Republican National Convention in Cleveland.

Del. Kathy Szeliga, the GOP's candidate for U.S. Senate, also is attending the all-you-can-eat event. Her Democratic opponent, Rep. Chris Van Hollen, also is scheduled to attend.

Don Rush

Some residents in Somerset County could get 12-house mega-chicken operation moving into the neighborhood.

It would be located on Anderson Road where neighbors at the dead end street say they worry about the operation’s impact on the area.

WBOC reports that Gary Pusey, the planning and zoning director, says that there is no need for comment from the public if the operation meets requirements of the proposed county poultry house rules.

OCEAN CITY, Md. (AP) - The owner of Ocean Aerial Ads will pull political banners supporting Donald Trump after a series of complaints.

Media outlets report that the ads, which flew on banner planes for only one day, allegedly read "Stop Mad Cow Disease ... Stop Hillary" and "America First. Build That Wall."

Maryland Motor Vehicle Administration

Maryland veterans who are 100 percent disabled will be getting a break from the Maryland Motor Vehicle Administration.

Governor Larry Hogan announced that they will be issued a permanent registration cards and license plate stickers.

And disabled veterans will automatically be receiving their new papers and plate stickers on August 1st.

It’s estimated that this will affect around 52-hundred veterans who are qualified under a determination by the Veteran Affairs Administration.

Prior to this these veterans had to register every two years though free of charge.

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BALTIMORE (AP) - The remaining trials for three officers charged in the death of a black man who was critically injured in a police van appear to moving forward, even though prosecutors have failed four times to get a conviction.

Officer Garrett Miller is scheduled to go on trial next week in the death of Freddie Gray.

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NEW CASTLE, Del. (AP) - Authorities are calling the deaths of two people found inside a New Castle apartment a murder-suicide.

New Castle County Police detectives say in a statement that the deceased have been identified as 25-year-old Ebony C. Smith and 27-year-old Braheem Queen.

Police spokesman Officer J.P. Piser says officers responded to the Georgetown Manor Apartments on Sunday evening for a welfare check when they became involved in an hours-long standoff with a man reportedly armed with a gun.

BALTIMORE (AP) - The port of Baltimore has welcomed the first-ever mega-container ship to arrive at its docks through the newly expanded Panama Canal, marking what officials call a "new era" for the port.

Media outlets report that Tuesday the Ever Lambent, a 1,095-foot Taiwanese cargo ship that can carry more than 4,200 40-foot shipping containers, arrived in Baltimore. Thanks to years of work dredging the port, it can now handle the large ships, creating a new boom for the port.

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WILMINGTON, Del. (AP) - Traffic restrictions during the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia could mean more traffic on the Delaware Memorial Bridge.

The Wilmington News Journal reports the Secret Service is banning vehicles more than 5 tons from Interstate 95 between Interstates 76 and 676 in Philadelphia from Saturday to July 29. I-95 passes within 600 feet of the Wells Fargo Center, where the convention is being held.

The truck ban will be enforced by police. Truckers are being told to find alternate routes.

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BALTIMORE (AP) - Baltimore is kicking off Pride week with parties and events across town that will lead up to Sunday's festival in Druid Hill Park.

Among the festival's highlights is the annual high-heel race, to be held on Saturday on Cathedral Street in Mount Vernon at 1 p.m., but beware to those brave enough to enter: No wedges or heels less than two inches allowed.

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PIKESVILLE, Md. (AP) - A former Maryland State Police trainee has filed a lawsuit alleging she was fired because she married her boyfriend, a former Secret Service agent who pleaded guilty to wire fraud and money laundering.

The Daily Record reports Ariana Esposito was training at the police academy in early 2015 when her boyfriend, Shaun Bridges, was charged in California with stealing $800,000 in bitcoins.

Delaware Crime Stoppers Webpage

DOVER, Del. (AP) - Delaware Crime Stoppers has teamed up with law enforcement departments across the state to try to solve cold cases.

Local news outlets report that the crime-fighting organization launched a feature on its website on Monday that shines a spotlight on unsolved murders. The webpage gives visitors information about cold cases with the hopes of finding those responsible for the crimes. 

Delaware Crime Stoppers began the initiative two months ago when it reached out to various law enforcement departments in order to get information about cold cases.

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Gov. Terry McAuliffe's administration is urging the Virginia Supreme Court to throw out a challenge to his restoration of voting rights to thousands of former felons. 

Virginia Solicitor General Stuart Raphael argued Tuesday that the Republican lawmakers and other voters challenging his order have no legal standing because they haven't shown they've been harmed. 

Republican National Convention Logo

With the Republican National Convention underway, it is a party that has become divided. Presumptive party nominee Donald Trump chose Governor Mike Pence as his running mate. The Indiana Republican is seen as a favor among social conservatives within the GOP. Delmarva Public Radio's Don Rush spoke with Kevin Wade, a Delaware delegate attending the convention. Wade ran for U.S. Senate two years ago in the First State.

Governor's Office

BALTIMORE (AP) - Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan says he doesn't see the point of moving forward with charges against three officers in the death of a black man who was fatally injured in the back of a police van, now that three other officers have been acquitted.

Matt Clark, a Hogan spokesman, said the governor responded to a question after the acquittal of Lt. Brian Rice on Monday. The Washington Post reported Hogan said: "It's a waste of time and money," adding "but that's up to the court system to decide."

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There will be no endorsement by the Delaware Democratic Party in the race for lieutenant governor and insurance commissioner in September’s primary election.

The Wilmington News Journal reports that the decision was made at the party’s state executive meeting to avoid division within the party.

Robert Gilligan, who was a former speaker of the state House of Representatives, told reporters that it will be up to the rank and file of the Democratic Party to make the decision.

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The home of convicted pedophile Earl Bradley is about to be sold.

The former pediatrician was sentenced to prison for molesting more than a hundred children.

WBOC reports that it confirmed the home was sold for more than the $250-thousand asking price.

In the past it had been difficult to sell because of its association with Bradley.

But realtor Kathy Engel told the television station that more time has passed.

Earlier this year the Bethel United Methodist Church tried to get the home torn down but was denied by the Lewes Historical Society.

Don Rush

FENWICK ISLAND, Del. (AP) - Natural Resources Police in Delaware have charged a Maryland man after his craft capsized off Cape Windsor, leaving him clinging to the boat for two hours before being rescued.

The agency said in a news release that authorities received a 911 call late Saturday from the headwaters of Big Assawoman Bay. The Roxana Fire Company's marine unit rescued 54-year-old Jeffrey Collier of Bel Air, Maryland, who was clinging to his capsized 28-foot cabin cruiser.

Collier was not hurt. A commercial salvage company recovered his boat.

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Authorities say protesters holding Black Lives Matter signs briefly blocked all southbound lanes of Interstate 95 in downtown Richmond.

Local media outlets posted pictures and videos late Monday afternoon showing about a dozen people standing in the interstate about 6 p.m. Monday. Protesters also draped a Black Lives Matter sign on an overpass.

WWBT-TV reported that Virginia State Police and Richmond Police were at the scene and had placed several protesters in handcuffs.

DOVER, Del. (AP) - Police in Delaware are investigating the deaths of a pedestrian who was hit by a car and his wife, whose body was found in their Dover apartment, where authorities went to notify her of his death.

Dover police said in a news release that early Monday, a man was struck and killed by a car when he walked into its path on U.S. Route 13. Officers say the pedestrian's car was found nearby with the engine running.

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MAPPSVILLE, Va. (AP) - Authorities say two people are dead following an apparent murder-suicide in Accomack County.

The Accomack County Sheriff's Office says in a news release that deputies found 20-year-old Elizabeth Madison Ann Jensen of Sanford and 27-year-old Jonan Fabricio Gonzales-Funes of Bloxom both dead from apparent gunshot wounds inside a vehicle on Saturday morning.

A baby, who was also inside the car, was not harmed. Authorities say the infant, who was the child of Jensen and Gonzales-Funes, was placed in the care of family members.

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WYE MILLS, Md. (AP) - The Maryland Department of Natural Resources is rushing to regulate a new kind of hunting weapon that's a cross between a high-powered air rifle and a crossbow.

The device is marketed by the Crosman Corp. as an "Airbow." The company's website says it uses compressed air to fire full-sized arrows with more speed and accuracy than a crossbow.

The Maryland agency said in a statement Monday it's proposing to regulate the devices as air guns, which are currently allowed for hunting certain bird species.

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Republican lawmakers are set to try again on a trio of bills that Democratic Gov. Terry McAuliffe vetoed earlier this year.

GOP lawmakers announced they had pre-filed legislation on Monday, the first day to do so ahead of the 2017 General Assembly session.

The legislation includes a bill to allow school security officers to carry guns, a bill to clarify that subscription-based primary care service is not insurance and a bill to limit the influence of labor unions on small business franchises.

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BATLIMORE,Md. (AP) - A judge has acquitted a Baltimore police officer on all charges in the death of Freddie Gray, a black who died after he was injured in a police transport van.

Lt. Brian Rice was acquitted Monday after a bench trial by Baltimore Circuit Court Judge Barry Williams. Rice is the fourth of the six officers charged to go on trial in the 2015 death. Three earlier trials resulted in two acquittals and a mistrial.

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BALTIMORE (AP) - A judge in Baltimore is scheduled to issue his ruling in the case of a police officer charged in the death of a black man injured in a police transport van.

Baltimore Circuit Court Judge Barry Williams will make his ruling public Monday in the trial of Lt. Brian Rice.

Rice is the fourth of the six officers charged to go on trial in the 2015 death of Freddie Gray.

Rice is the highest-ranking of the officers. Three earlier trails resulted in two acquittals and a mistrial.